Merry March For Newcastle!
Newcastle neared the end of their Premier League campaign as they went into March in 5th place. They played three league games, against Sunderland, Fulham and Tottenham. They also played their FA Cup 5th round replay against Sheffield United.
: Fabricio Coloccini
Newcastle looked to do the double over their neighbors as they made the short trip to Sunderland's Stadium Of Light. Mounir El Hamdaoui opened the scoring for Newcastle when Hatem Ben Arfa knocked a ball through to him. El Hamdaoui took a shot which Westwood got his hand to but it was too powerful for him and the ball ended up in the back of the net. With the game nearing an end, Steven Fletcher equalized for Sunderland when he nodded in Adam Johnson's corner. In the fifth minute of the match, Italian left back Davide Santon picked up an injury which will see him sidelined for the rest of the season. Attendance: 46,429.
: Tom Cleverley
Having been held to a draw by local rivals Sunderland, Newcastle looked to win their first game in March as they hosted Fulham. The Magpies opened the scoring when Moussa Sissoko crossed the ball to Alessandro Matri who fired the ball into the bottom corner. They scored their second before half time when Hatem Ben Arfa's corner found Davide Astori who passed it to Tom Cleverley who gratefully tapped it in. Fulham pulled a goal back when Dejan Stankovic's corner found Steven Whittaker who nodded the ball past Tim Krul. Newcastle restored their two goal lead when Gabby Agonlahor picked up Nicolás Gaitán's pass and fired it past the Fulham keeper. The match ended 4-1 after Fernando Amorebieta headed Tom Cleverley's cross into his own net. Attendance: 51,686.
: Davide Astori
Newcastle would move up to 4th place if they beat 5th placed team Tottenham. The match at White Hart Lane was an important one for both sides as they continue the battle for 4th place. Newcastle hit Spurs on the break as Alessandro Matri picked up Matheu Debuchy's long ball. Matri played it to Hatem Ben Arfa, who took the ball round Hugo Lloris before tapping it into the empty goal. With less than ten minutes to go, Newcastle broke away again and earned themselves a corner. Nicolás Gaitán's corner found Davide Astori, who powered a header into the net. Five minutes later, Tottenham pulled one back when Sosa's free kick found Kyle Naughton who volleyed it past Tim Krul. However it was not enough as Newcastle sealed a crucial win over positional rivals Spurs. Attendance: 36,284.
FA Cup 5th Round Replay Result
: Danny Higginbotham
Having drawn 0-0 at Brammal Lane, Newcastle were favorites to beat Npower League 1 side Sheffield United as they hosted at St James's Park. However, Sheffield United center back put
them into the lead when he headed in Ryan Flynn's corner. Ten minutes later, Mounir El Hamdaoui volleyed in Rúben's cross. With less than ten minutes to go, Sheffield United player Michael Doyle was sent off for a second yellow card. The game went all the way to penalties, where Matheu Debuchy had to score to keep Newcastle in the shootout. He stepped up to take it. However, his shot was saved by keeper Mark Howard. Attendance: 38,323.
The Player Of The Month award goes to new signing Mounir El Hamdaoui who scored two goals for Newcastle including one against rivals Sunderland.
The Young Player Of The Month goes to Vurnon Anita, 23, who played consistently in all four games.
Alan Shearer finished in 3rd place in the Barclays Manager Of The Month award after picking up seven points from a possible nine.